Response to Tameem’s Post
American history has it that it makes me think twice or several times. The Puritans did well in teaching the basics to their children: reading, writing, and spelling. However, in today’s standard, controlling learners’ minds to think only what we think is best for them is not completely acceptable. Children need to think according to their best thinking and not as passive recipients only. This way, we avoid indoctrinating them with our preconceived ideas, values, etc. Because they are rational individuals as we are, children or students should see for themselves evidences and how to best evaluate situations.
In the above first and second paragraph, I agree that “most educational decisions were [therefore] made in the family” because there is no established education system yet. I am grateful and commend leaders, such as Madison and Jefferson, because they associated education to freedom. Because of autonomy in the way local public schools should be run, local authorities were able to determine what to include in the curriculum. However, in contrast to the Puritan, town authorities anchored the subject matters to basic human rights: life, liberty, and equality. It is good to know that, from then on, leaders made significant reformations that did transform the landscape of educational systems, not only in the US, but in other parts of the world, past and present.
Despite anything to what I shared so far, there is nothing wrong between sectarian and nonsectarian schooling. Some parents prefer one over the other and vice versa, depending on their religious persuasion. However, it is best to consider educational principles in light of proper education, that is, “irrespective of origin, race or creed.”
Thanks for sharing!
Response to Heal’s Post
I agree with you that the history of American education is interesting. As most former authorities did (e.g., parents, clergy, etc.), they indoctrinated children with religious matters. The reason is that people were easier and ‘better’ led using religious texts and doctrines. However, because times do change – so do people (such as the protestants who adamantly opposed abusive religious practices and other forms of status quo).
Scientific-minded and progressivist thinkers influenced a lot how curriculum is developed. You have mentioned Tyler, Judd, and Bobbit and Charles. Curriculum experts, for the most part, see the curriculum as setting the conditions for learning. With the right curriculum that serves the needs of the learners, education (schooling) becomes, not just a preparation, [but] life itself.
Because of the technological advances today, learners are not simply learning within the four walls of the classroom. They have within their reach, not just the contents of a hidden or explicit curriculum, but virtually limitless contents and creative potentials. Thus, not only should curriculum experts align behavioral objectives with learners’ needs and assessment/evaluation, but create other content opportunities beyond what is currently available to us. We should not be caught off-guard considering that scientific and technological innovations grow at a much faster rate than ever before imagine. Educational experts should learn to teach students how to sieve, analyze, evaluate, and re-create ideas, data, etc. so as not to be mere repositories of endless information. Learners should not merely be passive recipients, but masters of their own specialization.